Are You Distracted or Creatively Stuck?
There were points during the writing of my book where I would take breaks—not writing at all for days, weeks, and even for a couple of months at one point. Seriously, I just can’t comprehend the manic madness behind authors who cranks out a book in a month or two. How is that possible? Sure, it doesn’t have to take years, but come on, a full-length novel in sixty days? Don’t get me wrong—I’m not hating on these ambitious authors in any way, it’s just that I can’t fathom the single-minded dedication and time commitment it must have taken to accomplish such a daring feat. Or the insurmountable amount of ass-numbness they must have experienced…*me laughing maniacally* I don’t know about you—but the struggle is real, butt-numbness has been an occupational hazard for me during my writing journey. But besides sacrificing my back-side to the Book Gods for the greater good, there have been other challenges as well. There were times when I couldn’t decide if I suffered from ADHD, if I were too distracted by other external things, or if I simply had writer’s block. Had my creative juices simply dried up?
Those times when….
Aside from work and family commitments, writing is like another of my babies—my man on the side, my master! But I admit to having been fickle on occasion, of not having been committed enough–of having given my affections to another. There were those times in which I would just space out; perhaps petering out one sentence per hour until I was finally disgusted with myself and had just called it quits. And of course, those times when I actually was pre-occupied with other things. Things such as watching Scandal or Suits, surfing the web…gotta check to see if those awesome taupe suede boots had gone on sale, or watching YouTube videos and catching up on Instagram. Any number of such important things. Whatever the reason, there were simply times when I haven’t given my writing the time-commitment it deserved. However, there were legitimate times when I had just simply run out of mojo, had just stopped in stupefied confusion; unable to put a coherent thought together. I had simply pressed the pause button mid-thought, never to press play again for some while.
Writer’s block, is it real? Do we sometimes experience sudden mental blocks during our ramblings? If so, could it be we’ve actually run into a roadblock in our plots; or is it simply exhaustion? Do we just keep going and going until we can’t go anymore—until our bodies go into protect mode by simply shutting down; like a computer? Do we just need to step away sometimes to get a fresh perspective when we’ve gotten stuck in our plots? How do we get our mojo flowing again? During these times for me, I would read a book that had been long neglected, step up my exercise game to clear my head, seek inspiration from my muse (to be later revealed), or seek inspiration by watching some of my favorite movies (The God Father, Star Wars, Gladiator…and I can go on and on). Eventually, I was always able to get back on track, but I sometimes had to force myself out of procrastination. Because sometimes my addiction to online shopping catches me at a vulnerable moment and seduces me to the dark side 🙂
Do you believe writer’s block to be real—or is it simply other external distractions that block our creative flow? Did you simply hit a road block in your plot and had to restrategize? What secretly shameful things have kept you from moving forward in your writing?
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